College Football Today

College Football Today


-Tajh Boyd, Clemson, threw for five touchdowns, ran for three more scores and had 531 total yards to lead the No. 11 Tigers to a 62-48 win over North Carolina State.

-Johnny Manziel, Texas A&M, threw for 267 yards and three TDs, and ran for 100 yards and two more scores as the No. 9 Aggies beat Sam Houston State 47-28.

-Montel Harris, Temple, rushed for a career-high 351 yards and seven TDs to help the Owls beat Army 63-32.

-Devin Gardner, Michigan, threw for three touchdowns and ran for three more to help the No. 23 Wolverines rout Iowa 42-17.

-Dri Archer, Kent State, ran for 241 yards and two long touchdowns to lead the No. 25 Flashes to their first Mid-American Conference title game with a 31-24 victory over Bowling Green.

-Keith Price, Washington, threw for 248 yards and a career-best five TDs to help the Huskies overcome a slow start and beat hapless Colorado 38-3.

-Stephen Morris, Miami, threw for 413 yards and three scores to help the Hurricanes roll past South Florida 40-9.

-Matt McGloin, Penn State, threw for a career-high 395 yards and hit Allen Robinson on three of his four TD passes in the Nittany Lions' 45-22 win over Indiana. He also set school records for yards in a season (3,071), career touchdowns (45) and single-season completions (251).

-Devonta Freeman, Florida State, ran for 148 yards and two TDs as the No. 10 Seminoles rolled past Maryland 41-14 to earn a spot in the Atlantic Coast Conference championship game.

-Taylor Martinez, Nebraska, threw for 308 yards and two TDs to Kenny Bell while becoming the No. 16 Cornhuskers' career passing leader in a 38-14 victory over Minnesota.

-Isaiah Anderson, Oklahoma State, had a career-best 174 yards receiving and caught three long TD passes from Clint Chelf in his final home game, leading the Cowboys to a 59-21 win against No. 23 Texas Tech.

-Tyler Russell, Mississippi State, threw for 274 yards and four TDs to lead the Bulldogs to a 45-14 victory over Arkansas.

-Brett Smith, Wyoming, threw for 412 yards and three TDs to lead the Cowboys to a 28-23 win over UNLV.

-Rakeem Cato, Marshall, threw for 377 yards and three TDs and ran for another score in a 44-41 win over Houston.

-Terrance West, Towson, rushed for 236 yards and two TDs in a 64-35 rout of New Hampshire.

-Dalyn Williams, Dartmouth, threw for 287 yards and three TDs and ran in another score in a 35-21 win over Princeton.

-Michael Colvin, Lehigh, passed for 362 yards and four TDs and ran for another score during a 38-21 win over Lafayette.

-Terrence Lefall, Howard, ran 41 times for 253 yards and two TDs in a 41-34 win over Delaware State.

-Ryan Aplin, Arkansas State, set a school record with 454 yards of offense and threw for four TDs in the Red Wolves' 41-34 win over Troy. He also became the Sun Belt Conference's leading passer with 10,307 career yards.



Johnny Football has a few records to add to his Heisman resume.

Johnny Manziel threw for 267 yards and three touchdowns, and ran for 100 yards and two more scores in the No. 9 Aggies' 47-28 win over Sam Houston State.

Another prolific day by the redshirt freshman with the cool nickname helped him break the NCAA freshman quarterback rushing record of 1,029 set by Missouri's Brad Smith in 2002. Manziel also broke the freshman record for total offense of 3,827 yards set in 2000 by Jared Lorenzen on A&M's first drive.

He also became the fifth player and first freshman in FBS history to pass for 3,000 yards and rush for 1,000 yards in a season.

His 4,161 yards are a school record for total offense in a season.



No. 3 Notre Dame is still in the BCS title-game mix. The Fighting Irish may have locked up a BCS bowl berth, too.

Everett Golson threw touchdown passes of 50, 34 and 2 yards, Cierre Wood scored on a 68-yard run and Notre Dame beat Wake Forest 38-0 to finish the season undefeated at home for the first time since 1998 and keep its national championship hopes alive.

The Fighting Irish improved to 11-0 for the first time since 1989 and need to beat Southern California to finish a regular season undefeated for the first time since 1988, the last time they won a national championship.

The victory virtually assures the Irish of a berth in a BCS game. The Irish need to beat USC and likely need either No. 1 Oregon or No. 2 Kansas State to lose to get into the BCS title game.



6-Straight times Harvard has beaten Yale, a first for the Crimson in a rivalry that started in 1875.

13-Outright Ivy League titles by Pennsylvania after beating Cornell 35-28.

21-Touchdown passes by Alabama's AJ McCarron, setting a new single-season school record.

44-Career rushing touchdowns by Army's Trent Steelman, breaking the school record of 43 set by Glenn Davis in the mid-1940s.

64-Wins by South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier, tying him with Rex Enright for most in school history.

78-Touchdowns by Wisconsin's Montee Ball, tying Travis Prentice's major-college record for career scores.

754-Total yards by No. 11 Clemson in its 62-48 win over North Carolina State



Michigan running back Fitzgerald Toussaint was sent to a hospital for surgery soon after sustaining a serious injury to his left leg.

Coach Brady Hoke declined to provide details after the 23rd-ranked Wolverines beat Iowa 42-17.

Toussaint's left leg snapped gruesomely between his ankle and knee as he was tackled by two Hawkeyes on Michigan's first possession and he was carted off the field.

The redshirt junior ran for 31 yards on three carries against Iowa, giving him 520 yards rushing in 10 games this season. Toussaint ran for 1,041 yards last year and was starting to regain his form in recent weeks.



Nebraska coaching great Tom Osborne joined Bo Pelini in leading the Cornhuskers from the locker room onto the field for their game against Minnesota and was honored on the field at halftime.

The day at Memorial Stadium was designated as a ``Salute to Tom Osborne.'' The 75-year-old Osborne is retiring as athletic director on Jan. 1.

A video focusing on Osborne's coaching career preceded the traditional Tunnel Walk. Osborne, wearing a red windbreaker and ball cap, walked side by side with Pelini from the locker room to the tunnel opening in the northwest end zone. Pelini pumped his fist to the crowd as he and Osborne jogged onto the field ahead of the team to a standing ovation.

Before the Tunnel Walk, fans on the east side of the stadium held up cards spelling out ``Thanks Tom'' in white letters against a red background, then flipped them over to display the message ``Go Big Red'' in red letters against a white background.

At halftime, Osborne, his wife, Nancy, and their family stood at midfield while a video tribute played on the big screen.

Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delany, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, former Oklahoma coach Barry Switzer, Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez and Kansas State coach Bill Snyder hailed Osborne for his character and leadership.

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What are Bradley Beal's chances of earning All-NBA?

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What are Bradley Beal's chances of earning All-NBA?

Bradley Beal has been indispensable for the Wizards this season with John Wall having missed 33 of their 70 games, or nearly half of their schedule so far. Beal's numbers are up in several categories from last season and he earned his first All-Star selection as a result.

Becoming an NBA All-Star is very difficult. Usually, about six guards per conference are picked each year. Being All-NBA is even more exclusive, as only six guards are selected from the entire league.

Wall has done it before and Beal may be in position to accomplish the feat himself this season. As of now, Beal could be considered on the bubble for third-team All-NBA.


It is an extremely competitive race and there are several locks to earn the honors. At this point, guys like James Harden and Russell Westbrook should get in easily. But after that, the next four spots are hard to sort out.

Based on his numbers, Damian Lillard of the Blazers should be a shoe-in. He is the best player on the third-place team in the Western Conference and is second among all NBA guards in points per game (26.6). He is also averaging 6.5 assists and 4.4 rebounds. He has already been All-NBA twice in his career and should get his third nod after this season.

DeMar DeRozan of the Raptors is probably the next-most likely to get in. He has led the top team in the Eastern Conference, was an All-Star starter in February and got his first All-NBA selection last year.

After those is where it gets interesting. The reason why is injuries. Stephen Curry in any other year would be a guarantee for All-NBA, but as of now he has played just 50 games. Consider that the NBA requires a player to appear in 58 games or more, or 70 percent of his team's games, to qualify for statistical leaderboards. 


Curry has returned to practice, but due to health and possibly rest down the stretch of the season, there is a chance he doesn't hit the 58-game threshold. That may present an interesting question for the voters.

Kyrie Irving of the Celtics is also hurt. He has played in 60 games with 11 left on Boston's schedule. The same goes for Jimmy Butler of the Timberwolves. He is rehabbing a torn meniscus and currently has only played 56 games. 

Chris Paul of the Rockets has appeared in 53 games due to injuries. Though his numbers could put him in the All-NBA conversation, Devin Booker of the Suns has played in just 54 games.

If injuries do preclude Curry in particular from getting in, then the door could be open the door for Beal. He would then have to beat out guys like Victor Oladipo of the Pacers, Irving, Butler and others.

Setting aside the most likely three to get All-NBA - Harden, Westbrook and Lillard - and Curry, let's take a look at how Beal stacks up statistically to the rest of the pack. 

Bradley Beal - 23.3 ppg, 4.7 apg, 4.5 rpg, 1.2 spg, 46.3 FG%, 37.4 3PT%

DeMar DeRozan - 23.7 ppg, 5.1 apg, 4.0 rpg, 1.1 spg, 46.1 FG%, 32.4 3PT%

Victor Oladipo - 23.3 ppg, 4.2 apg, 5.2 rpg, 2.3 spg, 47.1 FG%, 36.6 3PT%

Kyrie Irving - 24.4 ppg, 5.1 apg, 3.8 rpg, 1.8 spg, 49.1 FG%, 40.8 3PT%

Jimmy Butler - 22.2 ppg, 5.0 apg, 5.4 rpg, 1.9 spg, 47.3 FG%, 35.6 3PT%

Devin Booker - 24.9 ppg, 4.7 apg, 4.5 rpg, 0.9 spg, 43.2 FG%, 38.3 3PT%

Chris Paul - 18.8 ppg, 7.9 apg, 5.6 rpg, 1.7 spg, 45.9 FG%, 38.5 3PT%


As you see, not a whole lot is separating those guys. It may come down to team performance and other factors.

Working in Beal's favor is that he's been the most durable of the bunch. He has played in every one of the Wizards' games this season.

Beal has also helped keep his team in contention despite Wall's absence. The Wizards are on pace for 47 wins, not far off their 49 victories last year, and Beal has been the biggest reason.

But Irving's case is helped similarly by all the injuries in Boston, including to Gordan Hayward. He has been the best player on the second-best team in the Eastern Conference.

Oladipo has led the Pacers to an impressive season despite not having another All-Star in the lineup. DeRozan, Beal, Irving and Butler have better supporting casts.


Say injuries do work against Curry, Paul, Irving and Booker. And assume DeRozan is safely in as the fourth guy behind Harden, Westbrook and Lillard. That could mean Beal gets in alongside Oladipo.

If Curry, Paul or Irving get in despite missing double-digit games, that would probably bump Beal out of the mix. Oladipo has slightly better numbers and has drawn lots of acclaim for being the best player on a surprise Pacers team and he's no guarantee himself.

Beal has 12 games left to prove his case and clearly a lot of factors are in play, but the idea of him making All-NBA for the first time is not out of the question.

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Redskins Draft Countdown: Could Da'Ron Payne be the final piece to the D-line puzzle?

Redskins Draft Countdown: Could Da'Ron Payne be the final piece to the D-line puzzle?

Redskins draft countdown

Da’Ron Payne

Defensive tackle

Stuff the run in the middle of the line? Check. Get outside to stop stretch plays? Check. Get after the passer? Check. Yes, Alabama defensive tackle Da’Ron Payne checks all the boxes the Redskins are looking for on the D-line.

He can be the immovable object, taking on double and triple teams, and he also can chase down the quarterback. At 311 pounds he could be the Redskins’ nose tackle in base and move outside in nickel.

Height: 6-2
Weight: 311
40-yard dash: 4.95

Projected draft round: 1

What they’re saying

Payne possesses one of the most impressive combinations of strength and athleticism that we've seen from an interior lineman. He will be the premier run-stuffer in this draft, but he may have enough in the pass rushing toolbox to project as a better pro than college pass rusher. Payne is a game-ready starter who immediately upgrades a defense's ability to slow the run.

Lance Zierlein, NFL.com

How he fits the Redskins: This just in—the Redskins need a nose tackle. Of course, if you’re reading this you know that, and you’ve known it has been the case ever since the Redskins went to the 3-4 defense in 2010.

In very closely related news, they need to play better against the run, too. You probably noticed that they were dead last in the league in rushing defense last year. And that the NFC East has two very strong rushing teams in the Eagles and Cowboys and a Giants team that could well take Saquon Barkley with the second pick in the draft. If they don’t fix their rushing defense they could literally get run over.

Payne could help them a lot. He can take on double and triple teams and clog up running lanes in the middle. If they try to go around him, he has the quickness to penetrate and disrupt outside runs.

And a defensive lineman taken in the top half of the first round should be able to provide some pass rush pressure. As noted by Zierlein, Payne has the potential to do that. He’ll never be a double-digit sack guy, but if he can kick in four to six per year and get some pressure up the middle, that would be fine.

Film review: vs. Tennessee, vs Georgia (national title game)

Like most players, Payne can’t get much in the way of a pass rush when he is double and triple teamed. But when they tried to block him one on one he consistently got pressure. Payne didn’t get many sacks, but he did make a difference. Against Georgia, one pressure resulted in an interception and another forced a third-down incompletion.

Payne is very difficult to move off the spot in the running game, even when the offense tries to do it with two or even three players. Running backs did not get by him on a regular basis. In the second half in particular, Georgia tried to move the ball with Nick Chubb and Sony Michel, both of whom are likely to get selected in the top 100 in the draft next month. But they kept running into a mass of humanity in the middle of the line with Payne in the middle of it.

He played well during the Tennessee game during the regular season, but he didn’t have a lot of impact. The only time his name was called was when he was hit with a roughing the passer call.

Potential issues: At 311 pounds, Payne may not be the ideal size to fill the chronic hole at nose tackle. It should be noted, however, that defensive line coach Jim Tomsula has said that the Redskins aren’t necessarily looking for the 350-pound nose tackle and that a relatively smaller player can get the job done. Ziggy Hood played the nose at 305 pounds last year. The Redskins finished last against the run, although that’s not necessarily cause and effect.

Bottom line: The Redskins went 20 years without taking an interior defensive lineman in the first round before taking Jonathan Allen last year. Nobody could legitimately complain if they doubled up on first-round D-linemen after so many years of neglect.

Payne should be there when the 13th pick goes on the clock. Unless the Redskins address the nose tackle spot in free agency Payne will be under strong consideration. The defensive line improved last year with the additions of Allen in the draft, Stacy McGee as a free agent and the second-year emergence of Matt Ioannidis. Payne could be the final piece of what could be a dominant defensive line.

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page Facebook.com/TandlerNBCS and follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS.